Shock turnaround as Tuchel demands Chelsea keep backup ‘at all costs’

Marcos Alonso; Christian Pulisic TEAMtalk

Chelsea will not grant Marcos Alonso his apparent desire to leave the club this summer, despite two suitors preparing bids, according to a report.

Alonso has been at Chelsea since 2016, winning the Premier League title in his first season. He was excellent under Antonio Conte, but his form has tailed off since the Italian coach’s departure in 2018. He remained a regular in Maurizio Sarri’s sole season in charge, but began to lose his place under Frank Lampard.

His struggles for gametime increased even further last season following the signing of Ben Chilwell. The England left-back established himself as the main option in that position, leaving Alonso and fellow understudy Emerson Palmieri unsettled.

Both have been linked with a departure this summer. But it seems only Emerson will get his wish of a move away.

According to Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona are keen to sign Alonso if they sell Junior Firpo to Leeds United. The La Liga giants were interested in Alonso in January and now see him as a gettable target.

But their instinct that he could be available seems to be wrong. The Spanish newspaper indicates that Thomas Tuchel wants to keep Alonso at Chelsea.

England’s potential Euro 2020 penalty shootout heroes – and villains

Alonso started eight Premier League games after the arrival of Tuchel in January, compared to just three under Lampard earlier in the season. The report claims the current coach values the Spaniard for his comfort in a back-three formation.

Therefore, he is not willing to let go of him. The fact that Alonso is still under contract for another two seasons only helps their stance.

In a further blow for Barcelona, they would not be able to match the salary that the 30-year-old earns in England.

The report adds that Inter Milan are still keen on Alonso, but it seems Tuchel will try to prevent such a transfer. In fact, he wants to keep him “at all costs”.

It marks a change of plan for Alonso, who was previously believed to want a departure. But Tuchel has restored Chelsea’s positivity as a whole and that could have rubbed off on one of their players as well.

Emerson could end up in Italy

If Chelsea are going to keep Alonso as their backup to Chilwell, then it will surely increase the chances of Emerson leaving.

The Italy international has a strong suitor back in Serie A, namely Napoli. Such a move would reunite him with Luciano Spalletti, who previously made him a €20m player at Roma.

Emerson hasn’t always reflected that value at Chelsea, despite some signs of promise. Therefore, they are ready to cash in on him before his contract expires next summer.

Napoli are working on a deal and will hope to successfully lure the Brazil-born star back to his adopted homeland.

READ MOREChelsea join heavyweight scrap for Barcelona star tipped to become fire sale casualty